Ceramic materials have been used in industry for an extremely long time. Early man first developed the use of clay based ceramics to facilitate the production of metal tools alongside Chinese production of fine pottery.
Fast forward to today and ceramic materials remain one of the most important materials used world- wide. Without industrial ceramics we would have no metal production, no mass produced fabrics, no petrochemical industry, no electricity supply, and no advanced electronics. A different world to the one we all know.
With the current state of the industrial economy around the world this is an ideal time to consider the use of alternative materials for your applications and processes. Industrial ceramic materials, for example, offer a vast array of compositions and performance characteristics and can be a cost effective alternative in many harsh environments such as high temperature, electrical resistance, wear applications and chemical contact.
Measurement of high temperatures, greater than 1000 C, using ceramic based thermocouples is a well established process. In order to do this successfully the resistance wires within the thermocouple need to be insulated and protected.
Lava, known scientifically as Pyrophyllite, is one of the most promising natural solid materials in the world of industrial ceramics as a substitute to Steatite. Pyrophyllite can be used by customers who are in need of precision machined parts of Steatite in very small volumes for stocks, prototyping, and machinery, where it is not economically viable to manufacture the tooling necessary to produce the steatite parts. This material would an ideal substitute, primarily due to its similar properties, to Steatite. The fact that Pyrophyllite can withhold a maximum temperature of 1300oC as a refractory part means that it would be ideal for furnace parts. Lava is also capable of withstanding up to 700oC as an electrical insulator. Similarly to Steatite, it also starts to show leakages in electrical current at temperatures above700oC through a decrease in insulation.Although many of the mechanical, electrical and thermal properties are similar for both Lava and Steatite, this does not necessarily mean that the reactionary corrosion of each material will be the same. This is primarily due to the different chemical compositions of the two materials. These are because while Steatite is 65% SiO2 with 34% MgO, Lava has got 60% SiO2 with 35% Al2O3. These different compositions may result in two different reactions to the environment where the part is to be used.
To many businesses, purchasing ceramic tubes can be a difficult task. However, this can be made very simple if the exact material and size of the ceramic tube are known. If this however is not readily available, the more information the supplier receives then they stand a much better chance of meeting the requirements set. As with all applications involving ceramics, the selection process for the material and production method is critical if you are to achieve the most cost effective solution. If you know the exact material and size then this is easy – if not then, here is some information you need to give your supplier to make sure you will get a tube that meets your requirement.
Chemical purity, thermal shock resistance, light transmission and other advanced performance characteristics are superior properties demanded by labware applications.
Quartz offers excellent thermal, electrical, mechanical and optical properties that provide a very high performance for an extensive range of applications through industry.
The need for increasing the working temperature and thermal loads in modern technical equipment calls for the use of materials with excellent thermal stability and high melting temperatures.